After missing 19 games for Flames, Wideman's suspension dropped to 10

Dec 19 2017, 11:13 am

An independent arbitrator has ruled in favour of Calgary Flames defenceman Dennis Wideman, reducing his suspension from 20 games to 10.

He’ll be in the lineup against Arizona tonight:

Great news, right? Only problem is that due to the snail’s pace process, he’s already missed 19 games.

Wideman hit linesman Don Henderson hard enough to send him to the hospital, in a game against the Nashville Predators on January 27. It took a full week for the NHL to hand down a ruling against Wideman and then another two weeks to appeal it with the impartial one, Gary Bettman.

And now, three weeks after Bettman upheld the suspension, we get the verdict from independent arbitrator James Oldham.

Oldham concluded that what Wideman did was physical abuse of an official, but there was not enough evidence to conclude that the act was intentional.

The NHL, of course, disagreed with the arbitrator’s decision.

An interesting twist in this story included a follow up on the infamous text sent by Wideman that Bettman used as evidence in the appeal.

Gregory Campbell has never played with Wideman, although they were once traded for each other. Gregory is the son of Colin Campbell, who works for the NHL, so this is a very peculiar development. Well, if it’s true that is…

This has been a bizarre case from the get-go, so I guess it’s only fitting that some uncertainties remain.

The Flames went 5-5-0 without Wideman in the lineup for the first ten games of his suspension, and went 2-5-2 in the last nine games that were repealed. Unfortunately for the Flames (or fortunately, if you’re part of ‘Team Tank’) they will not get to replay the last nine games that Wideman should have played in.

While the Flames won’t get reimbursed for the games Wideman should have played in, the 32-year-old defenceman will get back $282,258 of the $564,516 he was going to forfeit.

DH Calgary StaffDH Calgary Staff

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